To the Editor:
I so appreciated Officer Keaney’s thoughtful reflection (May 18, page 1) regarding the hateful speech he overheard in a coffee shop; however, I find it ironic that under the headline “The power of a single word to hurt,” he uses words such as “inane, “foolish,” “idiots,” and “ignoramus” to describe people from in and around our community.
When people break the law, they should absolutely be held accountable; however, I see no reason why they should be held up to public ridicule in our community newspaper.
The stories Officer Keaney has told in this, and in past columns, often take place in neighborhoods that suffer from poverty, poor-performing schools, inadequate housing, and other social stressors. Life is hard enough for these folks without subjecting them to a public mockery of the actions of their family members, friends, and neighbors.
We all should do what we can to make this world a little less harsh, particularly for those who are already struggling. The Reporter has an opportunity and a responsibility here. Please report on the news, including crimes committed in our communities, but let’s be our best selves and avoid humor at the expense of others.